Polish WWII fighter Plane to be Reconstructed in UK

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henryk
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Polish WWII fighter Plane to be Reconstructed in UK

Post by henryk » 03 Nov 2021 19:20

https://www.polskieradio.pl/395/7989/Ar ... cted-in-UK
Polish WWII fighter plane to be reconstructed in UK
Polish Radio 02.11.2021 22:00

A fighter aircraft used during World War II by the famous Polish 303rd Squadron of the British Royal Air Force is set to be reconstructed in the United Kingdom, Poland’s PAP news agency has reported.

The project is being led by former British Royal Marine Scott Booth, who immersed himself in the history of the heroic Polish airmen after buying a Spitfire engine on eBay a few years ago. The Rolls Royce Merlin engine turned out to have belonged to a 303rd Squadron plane manned by Polish pilot Piotr Łaguna.

The only available information was that the Supermarine Spitfire P8331 "Sumatra" had been flown by Łaguna and was shot down over France in 1941, Booth told the Polish state news agency. He said he wanted to know more so he started searching for explanations about the history of the aircraft and its pilot.

Fast forward to 2021 and the ex-marine has painstakingly reconstructed the Spitfire's each day and flight, identifying every pilot who participated in the missions and the number of enemy aircraft which were shot down or damaged. He has even found Łaguna’s relatives, who are based in Australia, he told PAP.

Booth now showcases parts of the plane and assorted memorabilia during air shows, Polish Heritage Days in Britain and similar events. Yet he says he wants to reach new audiences with the story of the remarkable Polish pilots and so he has decided to rebuild the plane.

Last year, the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) approved the reconstruction and re-registration of the aircraft. All that remains is for sponsors to finance the project, believed to be worth GBP 3 million (EUR 3.5 million), PAP reported. Booth has already found a UK partner and is in talks with a potential Polish sponsor, in line with his plan to secure both British and Polish backing.

The reconstructed Spitfire is expected to take to the skies in 2025, 85 years after the Battle of Britain and 80 years after the end of World War II, PAP also reported. It said the project undertaken by Booth and his team aimed to honour the sacrifice of the Polish airmen during WWII.

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Stephan
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Re: Polish WWII fighter Plane to be Reconstructed in UK

Post by Stephan » 05 Nov 2021 22:43

There is something odd here. The polish squadron 303 got renown when using Hurricanes. If they used Spitfires it would be later on during the war.

There is one amusing anecdote. After a while, they got a visit by an enthusiastic school class. The boys were eager, full of the tales of the superbt Spitfires much better than the german planes...
So, the enthusiastic boys come there visiting the most succesfull fighter division; talking eagerly about the Spitfires... But the pilot guiding them gives the cooling remark: yes Spitfires are surely fine, but we are flying Hurricanes in our division....

gebhk
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Re: Polish WWII fighter Plane to be Reconstructed in UK

Post by gebhk » 06 Nov 2021 08:09

There is something odd here. The polish squadron 303 got renown when using Hurricanes. If they used Spitfires it would be later on during the war.
Hi Stephen.

While it is true that the 303 flew Hurricanes during the Battle of Britain, arguably their finest hour and undoubtedly the one they are most remembered for, nevertheless for the vast majority of their war they flew Spitfires of various marks (22 Jan 1941 - 4 Apr 1945 when they were re-equipped with P-51 Mustangs). They only used Huricanes for about 4.5 months (8 Aug 1940 - 22 Jan 41).

What is more odd, perhaps, is that, despite what could be reasonably assumed from the article, Piotr Laguna was never a pilot of 303 Squadron. During the the BoB he flew with 302 Squadron as leader Flight A. From 10 December 1940 he was CO 302 Squadron and from 28 May 1941, CO 1 Polish Wing. It was as commander of 1 Polish Wing, that he was shot down and killed on 27 June 1941 flying Spit P8331 'borrowed' from Squadron 303.
Last edited by gebhk on 06 Nov 2021 12:53, edited 1 time in total.

Stephan
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Re: Polish WWII fighter Plane to be Reconstructed in UK

Post by Stephan » 06 Nov 2021 08:36

gebhk wrote:
06 Nov 2021 08:09
There is something odd here. The polish squadron 303 got renown when using Hurricanes. If they used Spitfires it would be later on during the war.
Hi Stephen.

While it is true that the 303 flew Hurricanes during the Battle of Britain, arguably their finest hour and undoubtedly the one they are most remebered for, nevertheless for the vast majority of their war they flew Spitfires of various marks (22 Jan 1941 - 4 Apr 1945 when they were re-equipped with P-51 Mustangs). They only used Huricanes for about 4.5 months (8 Aug 1940 - 22 Jan 41).
Tx for the info! :)

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